Governorate General of Rio de Janeiro

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Governorate General of
Rio de Janeiro
Governo-Geral do Rio de Janeiro
Colonial State of the Portuguese Empire
Coat of arms
Coat of arms
Brazil in 1572
Capital Rio de Janeiro
Languages Portuguese
Religion Roman Catholicism
Government Monarchy
 •  1572–1578 Sebastian I
 •  1607–1613 Philip II
Governor General
 •  1572–1574 Cristóvão de Barros
 •  1608–1613 Afonso de Albuquerque
 •  Established 1572
 •  Disestablished 1613
Currency Portuguese Real
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Governorate General of Brazil
Governorate General of Brazil

The Governorate General of Rio de Janeiro (Portuguese: Governo-Geral do Rio de Janeiro) was a colonial administration of the Portuguese Empire.


In 1534, John III of Portugal started granting land rights to colonize Portuguese territory in South America, they were the Captaincy Colonies of Brazil. These fifteen autonomous and separate colonies were, for the most part, a failure administratively, and thus economically.

In 1549, in order to solve the governance problem of his South American colonies, John III established the Governorate General of Brazil.[1] The governorate united the fifteen colonies into a single colony, but each captaincy would continue to exist as a provincial administrative unit of the governorate.

In 1572, in order to establish a stronger and more capable military presence in the continent, the governorate was dismantled into two separate colonies, the Governorate General of Bahia, which encompassed the northern part, and the Governorate General of Rio de Janeiro, which took the south.

In 1578, the governorate was reestablished from the governorates of Bahia and Rio de Janeiro. This second Governorate General of Brazil would be once again partitioned into the two separate colonies, in 1607.

Finally in 1613, the Governorate General of Rio de Janeiro and the Governorate General of Bahia merged to form the third, and final, Governorate General of Brazil.


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